China: Another Great Leap Forward? by Justin Jin

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A former rural resident buys a handbag on the outskirts of Liaocheng. They are moved from their farmland several years ago and resettled nearby in purpose-built estate. China is hoping by relocating farmers into cities they would start to buy food, making a break from the cycle of farmers consuming only what they produce. The Chinese government plans to move 250 million rural residents into urban areas over the coming dozen years though it is unclear whether people want to move and where the money for this project will come from. Further urbanisation is meant to drive up consumption to counterbalance an export orientated economy and end subsistence farming but the drive to get people off the land is causing tens of thousands of protests each year. /Felix Features